Thursday 30 June 2016

Hobsey's puppies

The puppies are starting to stand up and walk instead of creeping, and all have opened their eyes. Hobsey prefers to feed them sitting up now.

(click on any picture to see a larger version)

Tom: this boy is chilled and easy to photograph!




And the girls, Sweetie and Dotty:

Tom getting some love. Think this little lad is going to be my favourite. :-)

Wednesday 29 June 2016

I see you

The puppies are starting to open their eyes. Unfortunately all the pictures I try to take come out as blurred, squirming shapes.

Tuesday 28 June 2016

Hobsey puppies purring

Lots of funny little noises...

Sunday 26 June 2016

Hobsey's pups throwing a wobbly!

Fatty and Harry threw a wobbly! You would think when she has eight boobs and only six pups they can do the maths, but apparently not!

Meanwhile, Sweetie wished to remain anonymous in this video, and so took off her collar.

Saturday 25 June 2016

Hobsey's puppies one week old

Just some pictures of Hobsey's pups going about their business as usual.

Friday 24 June 2016

Puppies 6 days old

They don't do very much at this age. :-) I'm not doing very well at keeping a proper record of their weights this time, as they are all obviously gaining weight and doing well. Fatty has doubled his birth weight and now weighs a kilogram.

Wednesday 22 June 2016

Happy 10th birthday Twiggy

Twiggy enjoying life here on her 8th birthday
Happy 10th birthday Twiggy ('Canen Cha Cha Cha'), my golden girl who came to stay with me in 2014, and the grandmother of my Hobsey's puppies. Twiggy went to a new loving family after staying with me, and they tell me she is well, and starting to slow down a little bit now. although she still has the appetite of an elephant! I still miss her a bit and think of her often, and am grateful for her lovely daughter. A very special family.

Hobsey and brother Angus modelling collars

Tuesday 21 June 2016

Puppies day 3

Hobsey doesn't like to leave her puppies, but it's important for her to get out and about and exercising to keep fit and help her body clean itself of the blood and residues left from the pregnancy. Once she is out, she plays with the others and enjoys herself.

I think Adhara was a bit disappointed that there aren't any puppies for her. She had a season around the same time Hobsey did and was fascinated when Hobsey gave birth to the last pup in the meadow, and is very interested in the noises the puppies make and in licking my hands and smelling my clothes after I have touched them, and smelling Hobsey. She is not allowed near them until they are bigger, because it would upset Hobsey and also because she might hurt them (although I doubt that she would, as she is always gentle with little birds that have hatched and things like this, and just likes to watch them in fascination).

Hobsey and puppies from yesterday evening:

Monday 20 June 2016

Meet the Curry Puppies

The two girls, Sweetie (right) and Dotty (left).

Fatty, for obvious reasons, a boy born weighing half a kilogram.

Tom, Dick, and Harry (L-R)

Hobsey's puppies day 2

Moving on from the loss of the seventh puppy and the lack of sleep the past two nights, I'm really pleased with this litter. Six is a perfect size for Hobsey's first litter, and she is doing a great job of taking care of them, and because they are nice big puppies (rather than lots of small, disoriented ones) they feed well and sleep like logs when they are not feeding.

At this point I believe both the girl pups are provisionarily booked, but things may change later. Some of the boy pups are still available. I do have a strict no visitors policy until the puppies are 4 weeks old, for reasons of biosecurity and so as not to disturb the mother, but I am very happy to speak to anyone on the phone or discuss by email if you are interested in finding out more about the breed or my dogs. Thanks to the people on the waiting list who have got in touch to let me know they don't need their place any more -- if you are on a breeder's waiting list, and you change your mind for whatever reason, there is nothing wrong with this, but please always let the breeder know as soon as possible, as it is important to caring breeders to know which pups they still need to find good owners for. :-)

RIP Unlucky Number Seven

Hobsey's seventh puppy unfortunately passed away about 7 am this morning.

She was born around 6 am yesterday, eight hours after the sixth pup the previous evening. The sixth pup was born three hours after the 5th, and Hobsey generally seemed to wait quite a long time between pups. Before the 6th pup was born, I was able to take Hobsey out and throw a ball for her a few times, which seemed to work, however after this it was dark and Hobsey was reluctant to go outside and leave the others. I spoke to the vet on the phone, and we agreed that the only thing the vet would really be able to do was admit her out-of-hours and probably end up doing surgery to get the pup out, which was not in the interests of either Hobsey or the puppies who had already been born, and it would be better to wait and give her the chance to pass the puppy by herself, whether it was dead or alive. I monitored her with the Doppler overnight and the puppy's heartbeat remained. At first light, I took Hobsey and Adhara into the meadow and Hobsey did a wee and gave birth to the last puppy. My initial relief that she was alive and moving was replaced by worry, because it took a lot of rubbing to get a squeak out of her, and she was lethargic and would not latch on. An hour or so later, she appeared to slip into a coma and at one point stopped breathing, and I had to do mouth-to-mouth on her to get her going again. She did seem to rally after this, and started moving around and squeaking again. Hoping she was exhausted from the long delivery, I tried putting Hobsey's colostrum and drops of artificial milk in her mouth, but she seemed to have difficulty swallowing anything, and very little instinct to suck. It is probable that she may have been braindamaged from lack of oxygen during delivery, in which case there could never have been a good outcome. :-(

Meanwhile, Hobsey is well and the other pups are thriving and have all gained weight.

Sunday 19 June 2016

Hobsey's puppies

She's so careful with them. Which is funny, because she's usually like a bull in a china shop.

Hobsey's puppies

Hobsey has six beautiful sleek, plump brown puppies who are doing well, 4 boys and 2 girls. She also has another beautiful girl who is not doing so well. I will try to write something more later when I am not feeling so shattered.

Saturday 18 June 2016

Friday 17 June 2016

Hobsey ~2 days to go

Hobsey hasn't started labour yet. What she has had is diarrhoea and horrendous flatulence. She's still getting out and about and enjoying herself, and just after this video was made a storm blew in and the roof in the study leaked.

A few people have commented on the size of her; however I'm not convinced this reflects the likely size of the litter, as she is pretty 'busty' and this changes her outline, and both times I've Dopplered her recently there seem to be fewer pups on one side than there are on the other, and I can only identify one puppy on that side, with there seeming to be three on the other and one in the uterine junction. Last litter born here was 9 and I could only identify 7 (the other two were presumably jammed up under her ribs like sardines or pushed right to the back of her abdomen out of the way of the beam) so there could be more.

Tuesday 14 June 2016

Hobsey's pregnancy approaching its conclusion

Hobsey got washed yesterday and seems much more comfortable with the coat shorn off her body, and slept like a log in her normal place on the end of the bed last night. Adhara was naughty and trod on the garden while I was making a video.

The vet came yesterday to microchip the emus and vaccinate the pacas. He brought with him a vet student who had come to learn about strange farm animals, although Olivia decided she had come to kick and spit on!

Sunday 12 June 2016

Hobsey's pregnancy 8 weeks

Just one week left until Hobsey's puppies are due to arrive. Hobsey is relieved that the weather has been a bit cooler these past few days, as I think she has been a bit hot and uncomfortable. She doesn't like to sleep on the bed like she usually does because she gets too warm.

Indi has decided to come in heat, at a rather inconvenient time. She has been in heat once before, but it was somewhat odd because there wasn't any blood. Her season this time seems to be perfectly normal (although there is not a great deal of blood, and she does not smell very nice) and she's apparently the first bitch I have had who has read her instruction manual, as her season is bang on six months after the first one (she did not cycle with Hobsey and Adhara two months back).

Meanwhile, the marathon begins to wash all the dogs and get the house sorted out ready for when Hobsey goes into labour. Cally and Loki were done yesterday and Stinky Poo got done today. The farm animal vet is coming tomorrow to see the alpacas and emus, and will give Hobsey her herpesvirus vaccination (important to protect pregnant bitches and young puppies) at the same time, and after that she will be due a nice cool shower and a trim.

The waiting list for this litter is starting to grow, so if you would like to ask any questions about the breed and find out if it is suitable for you, or you are interested in a puppy and think you can be the loving owner(s) one of Hobsey's puppies deserves, please get in touch. After the pups are born, we try to avoid having visitors for the first four weeks to protect the puppies and so the mother is not disturbed and we can concentrate on taking care of her and the pups, so anyone who would like to meet Hobsey and Loki and the other dogs (Adhara is the half-sister of this litter, and Indi will be the puppies' first cousin once removed), they would need to arrange to come this week, or wait until later. Some people who have been on my waiting list a long time seem to have disappeared, and haven't replied to attempts to contact them, and there is one person who asked to be notified when I next had a litter back when I had the 2013 litter, and unfortunately I have lost her details. Please get in touch if you were on the waiting list and haven't heard from me since Hobsey mated.

Leather stuff

I now have available two new summer-themed collars: Sunflower and Marigold.

I also have some new leads. These are intended for showing dogs, not for everyday use. They are made from kangaroo leather braided around a 65 kg breaking strain Dacron core with an English brass trigger hook. Wild kangaroos in Australia are hunted to control their numbers, and I imported this leather from there. Kangaroo leather is remarkable because it retains its strength even when it is made into very thin strips, which makes it ideal for this use. Currently I have burgundy & gold or jade & bronze.

This next collar is an exclusive item. It's called 'Royal Saffron' and is made in loving memory of Pasha (whose registered name was 'Princess Pasha of Wywylwynd'). I always had things for Pasha in this purple colour, and decided to make this for her daughter Adhara really. I will only allow the owners of Adhara's siblings to buy it.

Royal Saffron

Friday 10 June 2016

Alpaca shearing

The alpacas have been shorn, which was not pleasant for either them or us, but the alpacas now look much more comfortable (and we are now soaked with alpaca bodily fluids; that stain all down Poppy's flank is because she unfortunately wet herself on the shearer's mat).

Meanwhile the emus are much lower maintenance!

Sunday 5 June 2016

Hobsey's pregnancy week 7

Hobsey is 7 weeks pregnant, with 2 weeks to go. She is well in herself, although she dawdles constantly on walks looking for rubbish to eat.

Meanwhile, here will be new grazing for the alpacas.

On the topic of alpacas, congratulations to Di Davies and 'Green Park Neptune' who won champion fawn male at the Bath and West show. Neptune is the sire of the cria our alpaca Poppy is pregnant with. Both Poppy and Olivia's cria are due in August.

Alpaca 'Green Park Neptune'